The Acme surface water management facilities (a/k/a storm water or drainage facilities) include over 2,000 catch basins or inlets, approximately 187,000 linear feet of collection and conveyance pipe, 91 miles of conveyance/treatment canals, 270 acres of detention lake area, seven (7) flow control structures, and nine (9) storm water pump stations. More detailed information is provided in SECTION 4 of this WCP. Currently, there are $18 million invested in storm water pump stations, equipment and control structures throughout the District.
The Acme surface water management system provides three critical functions:
- flood protection (discharging excess storm water runoff),
- water quality treatment (before discharge to Waters of the State), and
- source water (for golf course and agriculture irrigation, and to recharge wellfields).
In accordance with Wellington’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) discharge permit, the entire surface water management system is inspected at least once every five years and is cleaned and/or maintained as need. Most components of the system are inspected with greater frequency.
In addition to the NPDES MS4 permit, the surface water management system is permitted by the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) to discharge to the SFWMD C-51 West Canal. The initial SFWMD Permit 50-00548-S was issued in 1978 and has been modified numerousf times over the succeeding decades.
The current configuration of the surface water management system, generally, consists of two primary drainage basins, A and B. Basin A is approximately 16 square miles, located south of Southern Boulevard and north of Pierson Road, while Basin B is approximately 13.6 square miles, located south of Pierson Road and north of 60th Street. Surface water levels in Basin A are controlled at 11.0 feet NGVD (wet season) and 12.0 feet NGVD (dry season). Basin A discharges north into the SFWMD C-51 West Canal through a series of storm water pump stations near Southern Boulevard. Surface water levels in Basin B are controlled at 12.0 feet NGVD (wet season) and 13.0 feet NGVD (dry season). Basin B discharges north into Basin A through the series of control structures along Pierson Road. For reference, the dry season is defined as November through April and the wet season as May through October.
The canals and lakes within the Acme surface water management system provide water quality treatment to the storm water runoff from the drainage basins, so that upon discharge to the SFWMD C-51 Canal West, water quality discharge standards are being met. Wellington participates in a rigorous program of compliance for its NDPES MS4 discharge permit, which continuously seeks to improve the quality of the water both before it even enters the surface water management system, and additionally before it is discharged from the MS4. Additional information on environmental and water quality programs is provided in SECTION 5 of this WCP.
In order to maintain water levels within its surface water management system during dry periods, Acme holds SFWMD Permit No. 50-00548-W, which allows water to be withdrawn from the C-51 West Canal, and, under specific conditions, from the Arthur R. Marshall National Wildlife Refuge to the southwest of Acme. An allocation of 413 million gallons year is specified by the permit. Maintaining water levels in the system allows its use for irrigation water by golf courses and agricultural lands, and it assists in the recharge of wellfields which lie beneath Districts lands.